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Reading the Bible Day 216

Hello friends! Today we continue our journey through Zechariah. Today is another case of prophets that stumble upon a far of LSD as the author of Zechariah witnesses some reallllllllllll weird stuff coming up. Try not to get lost in the weeds of the visions and instead look for the overview - what is the message that God is trying to say through this visions? If you need a reminder, yesterday's overview video from Bible Project is a great place to refresh your memory.


Scripture to Read


Audio Bible


Questions to Consider

  1. What does this teach me about God?

  2. What was happening at the time of the writing that this was in response to? Based on the conversations does this appear to have been written prior to or after Ezra-Nehemiah?

  3. What, if anything, feels applicable to today? What does it call me to do in response?

- My Thoughts -

What really captivated me towards the end was God saying over and over to the people "rebuild the temple! Don't be afraid and get one with rebuilding the temple!" I find that to be very true for churches today, primarily mainline protestants ones like ourselves. Many of our buildings are old and and in need of repair or fresh paint. Many of them could use a complete makeover to be more attractive and welcoming. But this is a massive financial commitment. Our churches also need new programming, restructuring organization, and a renewed focus on outward vision. Again, all of this is a massive financial commitment. Many, but not all, are sitting on large endowments and having more faith in the interest of the principle than what would be possible with the initial amount. It makes sense from anyone with a business mind or a half savvy investor knows to stay steady at the ~12% interest than to do anything volatile that comes with big moves that might not work out. But I can almost just hear God screaming to us in Zechariah saying "do not be afraid, rebuild the temple!" Do the projects, make the leap, and if you believe that God is behind the decisions you make you will not fail. If we do, well heck I'd rather fail trying than die slowly wondering what could have been.

But this isn't isolated to churches either, it applies to you and I as well. Many of us find the relatively safe options in our lives and stick with them because they are at least grounded. We don't chase the dream job once we get one that is secure. We don't try new things because we fail it will go wrong, heck if you're like me you don't even try new things on a menu or different restaurants once you find the ones you like. It's like God is calling to me and you alike and saying don't be afraid to rebuild the temple that is your soul and your body. I will be with you.


Praying the Hymns

Our prayer for today is inspired by hymn 216 in our United Methodist Hymnal - Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming. I hope you will join in voice or spirit as you make the words of this hymn your own.

Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming

From tender stem hath sprung!

Of Jesse’s lineage coming,

As those of old have sung.

It came, a flower bright,

Amid the cold of winter,

When half spent was the night.


Isaiah ’twas foretold it,

This Rose I have in mind,

With Mary we behold it,

The Virgin Mother kind.

To show God’s love aright,

She bore to us a Savior,

When half spent was the night.


O Flow’r, whose fragrance tender

With sweetness fills the air,

Dispel in glorious splendor

The darkness ev’rywhere;

True man, yet very God,

From sin and death now save us,

And share our ev’ry load.

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